life and faith living with M.E

When you need a hero

Don’t we all need a hero/heroine to look up to?
Didn’t Bonnie Tyler make us all yearn for one?
Someone who has made tracks in snow while we tread careful in their footprints.
Someone who makes us sigh with aspiration…if only… we could look/act/be like them.If you asked who inspires me, I’d be hard pressed to name but one.

There are so many writers/poets/bloggers who consistently call me to come up higher.
There are faithful, Christ-loving, family-centred, life-affirming, hope-giving individuals who give me pause for thought.
And yet…
Is choosing maybe a little closer to home?Inspiration can be found anywhere. Heroes are not all adrenaline-fueled, go-getters.

Sometimes it’s the person quietly and faithfully living out their days, battling life’s challenges with perseverance, steely-eyed endurance, grit and determination.

Courage wears many faces and can be seen in the unlikeliest of places.

What if this person is not only on my doorstep but in my home?
A man who would rate himself a zero in the hero and courageous stakes.
A man who lives a life circumscribed by fear. Haunted by “What if?”, taunted by, “If only”.
A man who shies away from crowds. Avoids public places. Has to fight demons of his own on a daily basis. 

 

Here’s the thing. On paper he may look the least likely candidate. But, put him in the fire of adversity for nearly 40 years and though he may be a little scorched around the edges, he rises to fight another day, and another, and so on.
Displaying courage and tenacity he never knew he had until tried and tested.
Not many men could find it in their hearts to give and give and give some more to a woman who failed to fully return their love and affection due to her battle with childhood sexual abuse ~ especially when his primary love language is ‘physical touch’.
Not many men could see their bride collapse a few short weeks after the wedding as her mind and personality splintered before him ~ and not feel short-changed by the new woman who emerged.  
Nor could they have all this hanging over them, only to witness her painful deterioration in health ~ resulting in loss of career and any kind of active life ~ then become the main person to take care of both her and the home when his own job prospects were gone.
To my mind this is the stuff of heroes. Any coward can walk away from a marriage or a life they didn’t plan for. It takes real love and guts to stick it out. 
To not only stay but keep on loving, keep on giving, keep on sacrificing, keep on believing for better.
No-one else mirrors the servanthood of Christ to me like my husband. His actions stem from a heart set on fire by Love Himself.
If he wasn’t around to tend to my needs, take care of the home and take on heavy responsibilities, then this blog (and poetryjoy.com) wouldn’t exist at all.
There would be no spare energy and time for me to write if he didn’t make sure that the major household tasks were taken care of.

He bakes bread, cooks, cleans, irons, drives, shops, tidies, keeps me close in his loving arms and dear to his heart.

All this effort given willingly, even though he struggles with his own physical and mental health challenges.

There would be far less opportunity for me to work through my past in the expressing of it here {with the hope of helping others feel less alone in their pain} if he wasn’t around to see to life’s essentials. 
And far less ability to befriend, communicate with and offer mutual support and encouragement to all my on-line friends, including those with M.E and chronic illness, and fellow writers/poets.
My world would narrow considerably. Life would be more of a struggle and challenge. Finding another loaf of bread to suit my fussy tastes would be just the tip of the iceberg! 

So this man, my husband, chief confidant and best friend, is the most inspiring person I know and the one who impacts my life hugely.

Just like the best wine, appreciating my husband’s finer qualities took time and maturity. He grew gradually into his role. Now it fits who he is like a well-worn pair of slippers.
I only have to witness his words and deeds to know Jesus lives in him and inspires him to be my ‘here on earth’ helpmate and hero ~ even if he never considers himself as such.


“Many a man claims to have unfailing love, but a faithful man who can find?” ~ Proverbs 20:6
He’s not perfect. Some days frustration sours him, discouragement sits deep and he treads weary. But he means the world to me and I see far more light in him than darkness.

Because heroes come in all shapes and sizes yours may look entirely different, but you’ll recognise them anyway.

I’d already found the greatest hero of all in Jesus before I met this one. And He knew who I needed in my life to inspire me to live well too.
Who inspires you the most?

Feel free to join in the conversation in the comments.

**NOTE** ~ To celebrate how much of a gift and blessing my husband is to me, I am giving away a free copy of ‘One Thousand Gifts’ by Ann Voskamp to a person chosen at random from those leaving a comment below.

 
 
Joining here with Holley for #coffeeforyourheart

 

And with Lyli for #thoughtprovokingthursday

16 Comments

  1. Rebekah 27th February 2014
    • Joy Lenton 1st March 2014
  2. Lyli @3-D Lessons for Life 27th February 2014
    • Joy Lenton 1st March 2014
  3. Dolly@Soulstops 27th February 2014
    • Joy Lenton 1st March 2014
  4. kimmie stuckinscared 27th February 2014
    • Joy Lenton 1st March 2014
  5. Helen 28th February 2014
    • Joy Lenton 1st March 2014
  6. Dionne 28th February 2014
    • Joy Lenton 1st March 2014
  7. Anne Dean 1st March 2014
    • Joy Lenton 1st March 2014
  8. Mandy 6th March 2014
    • Joy Lenton 7th March 2014

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